Steve Hackett – To watch the storms 2023 vinyl edition

9/10

About twenty years ago, when Sweden Rock Magazine asked me to review a new album by guitarist/singer Steve Hackett, I didn’t quite know what to expect. Sure, I loved Hackett’s old band Genesis – still do – and I knew that his first two or three solo records had been succesful. But now – 2003? I put the disc on, the sceptisicm lived on during the first number, but then – enter the Beatles-like “Circus of the coming” which made my jaw crash into the floor, and from then on there was no stopping.
“The devil is an Englishman” offered acoustic techno. “Frozen statues” resembled David Sylvian or the Walker Brothers. “Mechanical bride” was genuine heavy metal exchanging with cabaret and jazz, occasionally all at the same time, like a modern day “20th century schizoid man” (King Crimson).
Soon enough, we’re being handed “Brand new”, some powerful pop with wild signs of Queen. “Fire Island”, on the other hand, is a traditional Gary Moore-style blues. The schizophonic rock n roll medley of “Marijuana assassin of youth” signals the end part of the album, “When you come away” is a gentle folk tune with flutes courtesy of brother John Hackett, and the roller-coaster finally lands in “If you only knew”, a gorgeous, classic acoustic instrumental.
Seventeen songs, well over an hour’s playing time. Sure, it’s long. But the brilliant playing of all involved and the sheer entertainment value makes it worth every minute of listening. Especially on this first ever vinyl pressing. The sound is beautiful, warm and clear, and the front sleeve finally appears in all its evocative glory.
In my opinion “To watch the storms” = the very best of all Genesis solo records. Yes, superior to all Phil Collins and Peter Gabriel gems.

Artist: Steve Hackett
Title: To watch the storms – vinyl edition
Label: InsideOut/Sony Music
Date of release: 23-12-08
Rate: 9/10
Stand out tracks: Mechanical bride, Brand new

 

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Steve Hackett – To watch the storms 2023 vinyl edition

December 28, 2023

About twenty years ago, when Sweden Rock Magazine asked me to review a new album by guitarist/singer Steve Hackett, I didn’t quite know what to expect. Sure, I loved Hackett’s old band Genesis – still do – and I knew that his first two or three solo records had been succesful. But now – 2003? I put the disc on, the sceptisicm lived on during the first number, but then – enter the Beatles-like “Circus of the coming” which made my jaw crash into the floor, and from then on there was no stopping. “The devil is an Englishman” offered acoustic techno. “Frozen statues” resembled David Sylvian or the Walker Brothers. “Mechanical bride” was genuine heavy metal exchanging with cabaret and jazz, occasionally all at the same time, like a modern day “20th century schizoid man” (King Crimson). Soon enough, we’re being handed “Brand new”, some powerful pop with wild signs of Queen. “Fire Island”, on the other hand, is a traditional Gary Moore-style blues. The schizophonic rock n roll medley of “Marijuana assassin of youth” signals the end part of the album, “When you come away” is a gentle folk tune with flutes courtesy of brother John Hackett, and…

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